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Training & Nutrition Learn how to develop a training schedule that's good for you. What should you eat and drink on your ride? Learn everything you need to know about training and nutrition here.

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Old 06-07-04, 06:56 PM   #1
flyefisher
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Body fat %

I recently purchased a fat scale and it tells me I'm at 19%.

I ride 8-12 hours a week, am in top 20 of most of my cat4 races. I'm 164 at 5'10. Shouldn't I be lower? Does this mean if I lose another 10-15 pounds of fat I could be pretty damn fast? What do I make of this number?

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Confused...
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Old 06-07-04, 07:34 PM   #2
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Yeah,
they don't tell you that they're horribly inaccurate before you buy one. There are several things you can do to 'change' your %. For example, if you take socks off immediately before using it; it will change the reading. The best measure of weight loss will always be pant size. You drop to a smaller pant size, that's no foolin'.
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Old 06-07-04, 08:51 PM   #3
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As Late said, they are very inaccurate as an absolute measuring tool. A search in the forums should turn up some more details. Used as a general trend indicator they can be quite useful.

However, based on your height and weight the American Heart Association calculates your BMI as 23 - which is in the normal, healthy range.

I believe that approximately 20% body fat is considered 'normal weight' (for a male) so you have nothing to worry about if the scales are accurate.

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Old 06-07-04, 11:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyefisher
I recently purchased a fat scale and it tells me I'm at 19%.

I ride 8-12 hours a week, am in top 20 of most of my cat4 races. I'm 164 at 5'10. Shouldn't I be lower? Does this mean if I lose another 10-15 pounds of fat I could be pretty damn fast? What do I make of this number?

signed,

Confused...
You might want to compare your scale reading to the one available here:

http://www.he.net/%7Ezone/prothd2.html

It uses the "Navy" method for estimating body fat using some simply body circumference measurements, and is considered reasonably accurate for most adults.

Also, does your scale have an "athlete" mode? Most of the higher-end Tanita body fat scales have this mode...it is for people like you who exercise regularly and have high muscularity and/or low body fat. The difference between "normal" mode and "athlete" can be a lot...I just took my readings on my Tanita - "normal" mode said 15.0%, while "athlete" mode said 5.8%. The website above shows me at 13.6%, which I think is about right.

BTW - body fat estimation (using the "Navy" method) and tracking are built into my CycliStats ride diary and training log program (http://www.CycliStats.com ).
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Old 06-08-04, 08:23 AM   #5
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As others have stated - don't worry about the actual number, it's not very accurate. Your scale can work for you, though. Be consistent in terms of when/how you weigh yourself, and see how the fat% changes. Also, don't do this every day. Check perhaps every week, or every 2 weeks.

Good luck!
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Old 06-08-04, 08:31 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSP
You might want to compare your scale reading to the one available here:

http://www.he.net/%7Ezone/prothd2.html

It uses the "Navy" method for estimating body fat using some simply body circumference measurements, and is considered reasonably accurate for most adults.
Does this mean I'm low-fat? Lol.

Your Recommended Blocks
Your weight is: 140 pounds
Your sex is: Male
Your Body Fat percentage is: 8
Your Lean Body Mass is: 129 pounds
Your 'Ideal' weight is: 148 pounds
Your activity factor is: 0.87
Your recommend blocks per day are: 15 (112 grams of protein)
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Old 06-08-04, 07:45 PM   #7
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Body fat percentage of 6? Lol, I din know that, but it's cool... just thought I had a slightly bloated tummy and my body fat percentage should be like at least over 10%.

Your weight is: 119 pounds
Your sex is: Male
Your Body Fat percentage is: 6
Your Lean Body Mass is: 112 pounds
Your 'Ideal' weight is: 128 pounds
Your activity factor is: 0.83
Your recommend blocks per day are: 12 (90 grams of protein)

Well, I always knew I was underweight.
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